A Short Backstory and Related Thoughts on Travel.
As long as I can remember, my favorite view has always been through a car windshield while heading somewhere new. Something about the open road has always made me feel alive. I think it has something to do with the idea of not knowing where I am about to be next, but knowing I am absolutely getting there. That feeling, to me, is straight up good ole fashioned adventure, and I have been chasing it my whole life.
“A good traveler has no fixed plans,
and is not intent on arriving.”
– Lao Tzu
I started traveling and seeing the country at a young age. My father would take us on business trips and we would get to go to all sorts of wonderful places throughout the midwest and the south. My mother, on the other hand, would take us kids all over the country for punk rock concerts or anything else our little hearts desired. She has been to more Vans Warped Tours then you, I can almost guarantee it. She was and still is a real hero of mine, I owe her the world.
After high school I had the opportunity to live out my childhood dreams and tour full time as a guitar player. Over the next few years I would have the experience of seeing nearly the entire country. I feel in love with so many places, met so many amazing people and reconfirmed to myself that a life of travel would suit me fine. I just had to figure out a new long term plan, because the band life started to loose its luster.
When my band days ended it seemed like my real music days got started. I got into playing bluegrass and old-time music with my brother and started traveling to festivals and workshops all over the country learning to play in the real legit old styles. My Brother, Andrew, now plays cello in a great band out of Colorado named Gypsy Moon. You should really check them out. I have been going to one festival in particular for eight years in a row now, RockyGrass in Lyons, Colorado. It was during this three week period every year that I fell more deeply in love with the mountains and outdoors in general. Something about being near them have always made me feel more comfortable and at peace.
This is the point where I should mention that I am from Des Moines, Iowa. It is much harder to appreciate the beauty of Iowa when compared to Colorado, however I have learned to enjoy it. I started spending a lot of time outdoors. At first it was hiking, then camping, then later backpacking. I started to developed my backcountry skills and also started to amass a nice selection of gear.
In 2011 I met a friend through work that was interested in backpacking and then shortly after I started dating a girl that was also interested in backpacking. We started planning trips together pretty quickly. During the last three years we have gone on backpacking trips in Colorado, Utah, South Dakota, North Carolina and Virginia. It has been great to have two people in my life that are into this same amazing hobby. I am so fortunate to have Teresa and Dan as backpacking buddies.
We all decided this last spring that 2015 was the year for us and we have been counting down the days ever since. We talk about it everyday, and think about it every second. We have one month to prepare and tie up loose ends before we are off on the journey of a lifetime.
“Twenty years from now you will be more
disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.
So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor.
Catch the trade winds in your sails.
Explore. Dream. Discover.”
– Mark Twain.
So, as you can see, I am still chasing down that feeling of adventure. Only this time, instead of a road, it’s a trail….. The Appalachian Trail.
As always, feel free to like and share this post. I feel truly honored to share this experience with you all! Thanks for all the support and encouragement!
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